Can a spouse legally change the locks on our once shared home before the divorce is final?

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Can a spouse legally change the locks on our once shared home before the divorce is final?

I’m currently going through a divorce. All paperwork has been filed, etc. I currently still live in the home. My soon-to-be ex came to the home while I was at work and changed the locks so that I could not get gain access. We verbally agreed on them coming to the home to remove the remainder of property just as they’ve done several other times during this separation. Is there anything that I can do? I’m now currently homeless and can’t get into the house to get any of my belongings, etc.

Asked on November 12, 2018 under Family Law, Indiana

Answers:

M.D., Member, California and New York Bar / FreeAdvice Contributing Attorney

Answered 2 years ago | Contributor

Unless and until your divorce has been finalized and the decree states just which one of you has the legal right to occupy the house, it remains the "joint marital residence". This means that you both have the right to live there. This is true no matter whose name that the deed is in. At this point try going to the local police department and see if they can be of help, otherwise you should to go to court to gain entry.

M.D., Member, California and New York Bar / FreeAdvice Contributing Attorney

Answered 2 years ago | Contributor

Unless and until your divorce has been finalized and the decree states just which one of you has the legal right to occupy the house, it remains the "joint marital residence". This means that you both have the right to live there. This is true no matter whose name that the deed is in. At this point try going to the local police department and see if they can be of help, otherwise you should to go to court to gain entry.


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